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This guide provides print, online, and local resources for historical research.

Welcome to PPLD's History Guide!

This guide is intended as a starting place for finding information covering various topics throughout history. Use the tabs on the left to locate frequently recommended resources. 

To access ALL DATABASES offered by the library for historical research, please click on the Databases tab.

Key Research Terms

Secondary Sources. A secondary source of information is a document or recording that was created by an individual who did not experience first-hand or participate in the historical event being discussed or in the formation of an artifact. When conducting research, secondary sources typically provide scholarly information about a select topic that has been analyzed, interpreted, and/or evaluated. Thus, this source type does not substitute an original event or artifact, but assists in learning more about them.

Primary Sources. A primary source is an original source or artifact that provides evidence of a person, culture, historical event, or time period. This might exist as a document, diary, oral account, manuscript, autobiography, recording, architectural structure, or work of art. These types of primary sources were created by a person(s) with direct knowledge and experience of an event, or to serve a specific purpose during their lifetime. Primary sources are typically housed in museums and archives. 

Peer-Reviewed. Peer review is the evaluation of an article or book by one or more scholars. It establishes a process for editing and verifying one's research by having qualified members of the same profession review the article or book in order to maintain standards of quality and provide credibility. 

Scholarly Credibility. A scholarly article or book that contains content written by experts in a particular field of study. Some details to look for when determining whether a source is credible are as follows:

  • Are all sources used thoroughly cited?
  • Are the sources they cited used by other academic institutions?
  • Was it "peer-reviewed" prior to publication? 
  • Where was the source published? 
  • What else has the author written?
  • Is the author a reputable scholar?

Database. A database is an online, organized collection of information covering a variety of designated topics indexed using subject terms. Databases typically include access to encyclopedias, reference materials, articles, images, and secondary and primary sources. The resources provided are usually scholarly and written by credible experts in the field.

Pikes Peak Library District A-Z Database List

What are Subject Guides?

  • Subject Guides are mini-websites that offer resources and library services on a specific topic or subject. 
  • Click on one of the blue tabs to the left of this page to navigate through the guide and access resources.
  • All pages are printable (see option at the bottom of this page).
  • Subject Guides are accessible at the library, or from anywhere in the world with wifi, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • You can search for information or resources in the search box at the top right of the page.